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Niagara - Your Work From Home Destination
It feels like the pace of life is returning to a more normal beat. As life returns to normal and the world around us slowly reopens, new normals are emerging.
One of the new normals is working from home. This may come as a shocker, but the votes are in and it turns out that most people working from home currently (59% to be exact*) due to COVID-19 are just fine with the arrangement. "Interestingly, at 62%, men are slightly more likely to want to stay working from home, while 57% of women say the same.*" This new normal is creating a need for an effective home office, and at times multiple home offices if there are 2 professionals working from home.
We are seeing a trend that the demand for large freeholds (also referred to as McMansions) is making a comeback. Driven by the desire to create multi-generational households to ensure that Grandma and Grandpa can be well taken care of in the case of another need to Quarantine arises. Homes which can accommodate a comfortable inlaw suite are in high demand. We are also following the trend in a surge of second homes’ sales to provide an escape out of the GTA to locales that provide access to a secondary home with a substantial backyard and ample privacy within a reasonable commuting time of 2-3 hours from the primary residence. Again, driven by the concern of a second wave and potential need to Quarantine, a secondary home provides a safe alternative rather than having to hunker down in urban centers. Interested buyers are looking for a residence that provides the ability to social distance safely and be removed from densely urban centers.
"Resuburbanization” is a dominating trend. There was a time, not so long ago, where young professionals starting out in their careers and lives wanted to be anywhere BUT the suburbs. The steady crop of new condos and towers in Toronto over the last decade is a testament to this fact. Quarantine has shifted the perspective that drove those same young professionals into urban centers. We are now seeing a trend that now 10 years older and wiser, and perhaps with a young family, those young professionals want to trade the convenience of living downtown for more space and a less expensive lifestyle outside downtown metro areas. People are looking to leave densely populated urban centers in search of “ Agrihoods “ - - - shorthand for agricultural neighborhoods, agrihoods are sprawling, single-family developments with easy access to farms producing fruits, vegetables, and dairy, as well as farms focused on orchards, vineyards, gardens, and specialty items such as Christmas trees.
Quarantine has taught a lot of us the importance and the desire for access to nature. This new clarity is driving a lot of people to look for homes that provide space and fresh air where it’s possible to social distance in a way that might not be possible in a city. Simply put, people are looking to move to a place that provides a high quality of life with an easy connection to nature as well as ample space to live and grow.
Within an easy drive of Toronto, there’s one area that checks all the boxes for the perfect greener pasture.
The Niagara Region.
City dwellers looking to press re-start are now seeing the Niagara Region as a place to set down roots where they can reconnect with nature and afford houses. In Toronto, $400,000 gets you a studio no bigger than a shoebox. In the Niagara Region, you can buy a freestanding home for that same sum and a life free of condo board drama. The Niagara region is made up of 12 municipalities, each with its own personality. There are quaint areas radiating rural charm, beachfront cottages aplenty, as well as attractive small towns with historic main streets. Did we mention the reason that Niagara is such a haven for grapes? The answer is long summers and moderate winters, which is why Niagara is also Ontario’s fruit belt. Living in Niagara means you have access to some of the best fruit and veggies in the province.
During a time when there is consistent chatter about a potential decline in home prices or home sales, we feel these trends and the role the Niagara Region plays as a solution to the needs emerging from these trends, we feel strongly that there is no better time to invest in the Niagara Region.
(* stats sourced from: FORBES)
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